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Marshall Lady Mavericks on road today

By Nathan Hague
March 16, 2017 at 6 a.m.

Marshall junior Haylie Rich hopes to help the Lady Mavericks earn a victory today in Sulphur Springs.

Even though the Marshall Lady Mavs were unable to pull out a win over Texas High on Tuesday night, they were pleased with the fact they were able to score five runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to avoid the 10-run rule.

"It all starts with one person," junior Haylie Rich said. "Noodles (Makayla Powell) started it off and we all go excited about wanting to hit."

Rich, who then got on with a two-RBI single, currently has a batting average of .291 with 16 hits, 20 runs and eight RBI. On top of that, she has stolen 15 bases.

"She's stolen 15 bases on 18 attempts," Marshall head coach Alli Shepperd said. "That's a pretty good percentage. My next closest to her is like six so she's definitely strong a weapon when it comes to stealing bases."

Shepperd added there's not much in the game of baseball that Rich can't do.

"She is probably the definition of a utility player," Shepperd said. "She has played shortstop, second base, third base, center field and left field this year. She's played almost everywhere and she will play anywhere that I ask her to, no question or hesitation.

"She's very knowledgeable being able to play all those positions. Offensively, she's working really hard and she has been a really good leadoff batter for us this year."

The Lady Mavs currently hold an overall record of 4-17 and Rich is well aware that there is plenty of room for improvement.

"I'd say we're working on it (team chemistry)," Rich said. "It's definitely coming along better than it was at the beginning of the season. We're just trying to continue to come out of our batting slump and pull off more hits every game. We trust our defense. We just have to be aggressive.

"We can't just keep doing the same thing and expect different results. We have to change something."

Rich and her Lady Mavs are slated to return to action today when they take on Sulphur Springs on the road.

"We expect to jump on them early and get hits in the first inning and continue that streak throughout the game and keep our defense strong," Rich said.

"They have some really good hitters," Shepperd said. "We have a unique pitching staff and I think that will play to our advantage, but of course, they're a great softball program and we'll have to fight for everything we get."

First pitch of the varsity game is slated for 3:30 p.m. at Sulphur Springs.

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